When she flies home for visits, she demands that a staffer be waiting with a motorized car to whisk her from the gate. And when she goes abroad, while the rest of the congressional delegation usually travels by military bus, nothing less than a black Mercedes will do to squire her around town.

Although government employees are banned from performing personal services for elected officials, Roll Call magazine discovered that Lee was ordering low-paid workers to run errands during off-hours. Some chauffeured her to the hairdresser. Others picked up her laundry. One was summoned from bed after midnight to fetch a bottle of garlic supplements.

The work environment is so bad that one ex-employee was warned by a doctor to either quit or die from the stress. "It's like being an Iraq War veteran," said another.

All this might be easier to swallow if Lee were abusing her power for something important. Yet when it comes to being ineffectual, she's the Democratic answer to Louie Gohmert.

The congresswoman is known as a grandstander extraordinaire, her floor speeches both endless and mind-blistering. At the start of one such effort, journalist Robert Draper counted 100 Democrats on the House floor. Within the first minute, 80 had fled for cover.

"If she was effective, it'd be forgivable," says a Texas Republican who asked not to be named. "But she's not. The only reason she proposes anything is to get airtime."

In fact, abusing employees may be Lee's only achievement after 18 years in Washington. No member of Congress has proposed more failed amendments, indicative of her lack of legislative juice. According to C-Span, Lee has had 39 proposals spiked in the past year alone.

3. Trent Franks (R-Arizona): You Say "Tomato," He Says "Abortion"

Arizona Congressman Trent Franks is the John Coltrane of Congress. He's managed to spend the past decade in Washington playing but one note: an extreme take on abortion.

He may be the country's most irrelevant congressman, passing exactly zero of the 45 bills he's sponsored. Few have been taken seriously enough to even merit a vote.

As Frank sees it, his job isn't to move America forward. It's to talk, talk, and talk some more about abortion.

"Abortion has been his one and only issue," says Arizona Democratic Party spokesman Frank Camacho. "That's his main claim to fame."

This proved true during a recent House debate on fiscal policy, when Illinois Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. — who recently pleaded guilty to blowing $750,000 in campaign contributions on his wife and himself — asked whether anyone could explain a balanced-budget amendment. Franks eagerly offered his assistance. "I'll give it a shot," he said.

He then proceeded to talk for three minutes about — what else? — abortion. And Nazis.

Franks has called Obama the "abortion president," and once claimed that abortion laws were more devastating to blacks than slavery.

But his zealotry hasn't been particularly effective. Unable to pass national legislation, he lowered his sights to the capital city, pushing a law that would ban women in Washington, D.C., from having an abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

When D.C. residents objected in a novel way — by lining up outside Franks' office and asking the Arizona legislator they sarcastically called "mayor" to fix potholes — Franks clumsily sidestepped. "District of Columbia is not the issue," he said. "It's the pain of the child."

The protesters, however, had little to fear. The bill soon died on the House floor. Like everything else Franks does, it was merely one more piece of amateur theater in an ongoing show with no end.

2. Paul Broun (R-Georgia): Science Is the Devil's Playground

One of the more distressing movements in Jindal's "stupid party" is its increasingly anti-scientific fervor. Leading the charge is Georgia Congressman Paul Broun, who believes that science is the Devil's work. Literally.

"All that stuff I was taught about evolution and embryology and the Big Bang Theory, all that is lies straight from the pit of Hell," Broun once declared.

This didn't stop Republican leaders from appointing him to the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, a decision akin to Apple hiring Nicki Minaj to head its research division.

In a speech before a sportsmen's club, Broun told the audience that though Jesus hates science, Our Savior showed a great deal of enthusiasm in getting Paul Broun elected to Congress and helping him kill a Kodiak bear and two lions.

He's also accused President Obama of upholding the Soviet constitution rather than the U.S. version. Among his proudest moments: He claims to be the first politician to call Obama a "socialist."

Though Broun represents a fundamentalist swath outside Atlanta, his anti-science views don't reflect a sliver of sanity in his district known as Athens, home to the University of Georgia. So biologist Jim Leebens-Mack started a write-in campaign against the congressman.

Instead of running himself, Mack encouraged voters to back a new candidate: Charles Darwin. Broun may have won re-election, but the long-deceased Darwin still managed to get 4,100 votes.

1. Michele Bachmann (R-Minnesota): The Demagogue Slugger With Power to All Fields

Years from now, historians will look back on the year 2013 and think to themselves, Michele Bachmann? Really?

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17 comments
nimh
nimh

So, right off the bat, this list says that being called the intellectual voice of the Tea Party is akin to "being the valedictorian of a carjacking ring" ... But then, right in its second point, blames Grayson for calling Republicans "knuckle-dragging Neanderthals" and generally contributing to "the partisan firefight disabling Washington". Um, ok. Hypocrisy much?

atlantis1star
atlantis1star

Why does Franks oppose the tribe’s Casino in Glendale? Simple, really. Trent Franks is a mentally unstable man with a history of psychological problems. He is putting a knife in the back of Glendale for "narrow special interests." Let’s guess who that is?

Right-wing nut bags in Sun City who hate everything?

Religious nuts who oppose gambling and anything slightly fun?

The chamber of commerce who will not have influence over the tribe?

1)Glendale would not have any say on how the property is developed.

2)Glendale would not capture any tax revenue from the property, including property tax and sales tax.

3)Glendale is afraid that a casino on the property would take away revenue from the Westgate Center.

4)Only the Gila River Nation opposes the project which is ABSOLUTELY no surprise, because they are the only nation near the area (in Laveen) and therefore have monopoly on casinos in the area.

Trent Franks knows the deal is legal and approved by the BIA, so he sneaks laws into congress to stop the deal. Scottsdale has no problem with casinos and they have plenty of jobs

ReggieVV
ReggieVV

Trent Franks, absolutely useless to Arizona or his constituents. Not one bill helping Arizona. And obsessed with one subject.

eric.nelson745
eric.nelson745 topcommenter

I've said it before and i'll say it again: Trent Franks, my illustrious Member of Congress, should have been aborted. Short of that, it's a cryin' shame that he survived childhood.

MaskedMagician1967
MaskedMagician1967 topcommenter

Why the hell am I paying Trent Franks to be a congressman?

Franks needs to be booted from office. Now. He's too mentally sick to be a congressman.

Cozz
Cozz

Sure is obvious why this county in going down the toilet fast with idiots like this in office, even worse is the idiot voters that actually vote for these slimeballs.

marcy
marcy

While this story is about the PCSO, the real story is that cops, for the most part, are barely civilized thugs.

pszymeczek
pszymeczek

The scariest one to me is Paul Broun.  This anti-science nut is a PHYSICIAN.

bob_lablaw96
bob_lablaw96

A well balanced list, I think.  I had expected you to have all 10 nominees be from the Right side of the aisle. Thanks for not doing that.

Why was Joe Biden not on the list?  That has to be the craziest guy we have seen in years.  Even worse than Bush, when it comes to saying the wrong thing, Joe usually seems to wait for the teleprompter before asking for morning coffee.


All in all, though, a good list

getmeouttahere
getmeouttahere

@eric.nelson745 Franks has such a one-track mind about abortion that one wonders if his own mother repeatedly told him that she wished she had aborted him, giving him a psychological complex that Freud would have a field day with. It would certainly explain his obsession with the topic and his obvious mental and emotional  problems (talk to anyone who has met the man; there is something VERY wrong with him.) Either that, or like that horndog hypocrite  from Tennessee, Franks has dragged a few knocked-up girlfriends and mistresses to the abortion clinic himself.

It's an all-to-common phenomenon; those who yell the loudest about something are often the most guilty of what they despise and condemn. So the anti-abortion zealot forces his own wife and/or girlfriend to have an abortion; the anti-pornography crusader has a huge stash of the most depraved porn available on his computer or, if he's old-school, under the bed; the guy ranting the loudest against homosexuality is himself a self-loathing closet case, trolling airport bathrooms and rentboy websites for hookups; and the guy preaching against divorce and adultery and demanding a return to "Christian family values" is himself a serial philanderer who repeatedly screws women whhis wife and could not be faithful

getmeouttahere
getmeouttahere

@@eric.nelson745 Franks has such a one-track mind about abortion that one wonders if his own mother repeatedly told him that she wished she had aborted him, giving him a psychological complex that Freud would have a field day with. It would certainly explain his obsession with the topic and his obvious mental and emotional  problems (talk to anyone who has met the man; there is something VERY wrong with him.) Either that, or like that horndog hypocrite  from Tennessee, Franks has dragged a few knocked-up girlfriends and mistresses to the abortion clinic himself.

It's an all-to-common phenomenon; those who yell the loudest about something are often the most guilty of what they despise and condemn. So the anti-abortion zealot forces his own wife and/or girlfriend to have an abortion; the anti-pornography crusader has a huge stash of the most depraved porn available on his computer or, if he's old-school, under the bed (just for "research purposes," of course); the guy ranting the loudest against homosexuality is himself a self-loathing closet case, trolling airport bathrooms and rentboy websites for hookups; and the guy preaching against divorce and adultery and demanding a return to "Christian family values" is himself a serial cheater who repeatedly hires hookers and/or screws women who aren't his wife and could not be monogamous if you paid him to be (or, if you're Newt Gingrich, unless your wife is with you at all times; honestly, does anyone really think that plastic fembot he's married to, travels with him all of the time because she just can't be without him? She has to know damn well that if she lets Newty out of her sight, he'll mount the first thing with boobs that he sees, and she'll be on her way to being the next ex-Mrs. Gingrich.) 

Alas, it is hard to say if such revolting hypocrisy, or the rank idiocy of the human failures listed above, is a new phenomenon, or just one we're more aware of it now in our era of internet transparency and 24-hour news cycles. But it does make one suspect that perhaps democracy as practiced in the US has reached its "jump the shark"point and it is time for a new system. Perhaps it is also time that we admit that the stupid should not be permitted to breed, much less vote.

azcumsquelcher
azcumsquelcher

@bob_lablaw96 Even the liberals that they picked weren't really crazy, just kind of mean-spirited. The purpose of this article is to paint the GOP as having the most bat-shit crazy or "weird," as the author kindly puts it, representatives in the country. I couldn't be less surprised that they picked on Michelle Bachman to lead the list, she's kind of quirky and liberals love to hate her. I definitely agree with you that Joe Biden is a lunatic

 
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